Henneberg (noble family)

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Family coat of arms according to Scheibler's book of arms

The Counts of Henneberg were a Frankish noble family that rose to the imperial prince status.

Towards the end of the 11th century, around 200 years after the Franconian colonization of the east, in the course of the disintegration of the Franconian county constitution and the disappearance of the Franconian imperial estate in the area between the Thuringian Forest and the Main, they expanded their territory and founded the county of Henneberg . For the first time the counts , who presumably came from the Popponen family, were mentioned chronically in 1078 and in a document in 1096. The house went out in the male line in 1583.

Development of the house

Coat of arms of the Hennenberg in the Zurich coat of arms roll (approx. 1340)
Veßra Monastery : Reconstructed entrance coat of arms
The princes of Henneberg 1312-1353


Ancestral seat of the Counts of Henneberg was the Henneburg on the Henneberg near the village of the same name in today's Thuringian district of Schmalkalden-Meiningen . The lineage of those "von Henneberg" is first ascertainable in 1096 with the Würzburg burgrave Godebold II, whose ancestry is traced back to the Popponen (Babenberger von der Babenburg ). The Hennebergers were probably burgraves in Würzburg as early as 1057 ; this position was then lost in the power struggle with the Würzburg bishops until 1354.

The estate of the lordship built on the possessions of the Babenbergs, from whom Poppo I. Graf von Henneberg († 1078) descended. Their imperial fiefs were in the Thuringian Forest from the sluice to the Hasel as well as at Lichtenberg Castle and the surrounding area. Under Godebold II († 1144) the foundation stone for the importance of the Henneberg Count House was laid. He shifted the center of gravity of his rule to the east. In this context the house monastery Veßra was founded in 1131 . Godebold II wanted a closed property between Schleusingen and Henneberg. This brought the Henneberg ancestral castle to the brink of domination. Since the second half of the 12th century, the Hennebergers gained influence in the northeast through the inheritance of the Nordeck ( Stadtsteinach ) rule . Ownership remained constant until the middle of the 13th century.

Divisions in lineages

Poppo II. († 1118) had already founded the branch line of the lords or counts of Frankenstein, who lived in Frankenstein and Krayenburg Castle and in the Lengsfeld rule until around 1354 , Gotebold III. (* 1107; † after 1164) a branch line in Wasungen . Subsidiary lines that did not bear the title of count emerged in 1131 in Irmelshausen , 1156 in Lichtenberg and 1199 in Sternberg in Lower Franconia.

In 1190 the main line was divided into the lines Henneberg, Botenlauben and Strauf . In 1274 there was another division into the lines Henneberg- Schleusingen , Henneberg- Aschach - Römhild and Henneberg- Hartenberg . The most powerful line was Henneberg-Schleusingen with its seat at Bertholdsburg Castle , which also had the longest existence. In 1310 Berthold VII von Henneberg-Schleusingen, who had received the Henneburg in 1274, was raised to the rank of imperial prince . At times he was authorized representative of Brandenburg and Electoral Saxony, administrator of Bohemia and guardian of the Wittelsbach emperor's son Ludwig of Bavaria.

After the Dukes of Andechs-Meranien died out in 1248, their possessions around Coburg fell to the Counts of Henneberg-Strauf. Due to the marriage of Poppo VI., Otto von Botenlauben's father , to Sophie of Istria there were family ties between the two houses . Count Hermann I von Henneberg -Coburg (1224–1290) received after the Ludowingers died out in 1249 from his stepbrother, the Margrave Heinrich III. von Meißen an area around Schmalkalden and formed the “New Rulership” from the Straufschen and Botenlaubener legacies, the Coburg area and other gains. With the death of his son Poppo VIII in 1291, this was lost to the Electorate of Brandenburg as the heir of Hermann's daughter Jutta through her marriage to the Ascan co-regent Margrave Otto the Tall One of Brandenburg zu Salzwedel under the name of Pflege Coburg . With the marriage of Jutta's granddaughter Jutta von Brandenburg, who later became regent Jutta von Henneberg , with the son of Prince Count Berthold VII von Henneberg-Schleusingen, Heinrich VIII so that it reached its greatest territorial extent.

The most important cities in the county were now Schmalkalden, Coburg and Suhl . In 1542 Meiningen came to Henneberg and became another center of the county. With extensive mining and arms manufacturing, Suhl formed the economic center, in Meiningen the textile and metal handicrafts and trade were strongly represented, while the other cities served as residences and centers of culture and art. The spiritual center of the county was the Premonstratensian monastery Veßra (now the Hennebergisches Museum Kloster Veßra ) founded by the Hennebergers in 1131 , which served almost all generations as a burial place.

Buildings and possessions

Loss of territory through inheritance

Henneberg residence Bertholdsburg in Schleusingen

When Prince Count Heinrich VIII died in 1347, the property of the House of Henneberg-Schleusingen was divided between his widow and Heinrich's younger brother Johann I , and Jutta was again awarded the new rule. With Jutta's death in 1353, the new rule was divided among three of her daughters, Elisabeth , Katharina and Sophie, as heirs. The fourth daughter Anna , as abbess, led the Cistercian monastery of Sonnefeld to an unexpected prosperity.

A significant part of the county, the southeastern part of the New Rulership around Coburg and Sonneberg, went to the family as heir of the second oldest daughter Katharina († 1397) when she married the Margrave of Meißen and Landgrave of Thuringia Friedrich the Strengen (III.) In 1347 House Wettin . Friedrich IV , who emerged from this marriage, was the first elector of the Wettin family. Through the marriage of Friedrich III's brother, Balthasar , with Margaretha, the daughter of Sophie von Henneberg and the Burgrave Albrecht the Beautiful of Nuremberg from the House of Hohenzollern , Hildburghausen, along with the Heldburger Unterland and the lands around Eisfeld, also came to the Wettins in 1374. Thus, the Coburg care had become the southernmost part of the Electorate of Saxony .

The husband of the eldest daughter Elisabeth, Count Eberhard II of Württemberg , sold a large part of the Lower Franconian goods for 90,000 guilders to the Bishopric of Würzburg . Gradually most of the remaining possessions were also lost to Würzburg. Landgrave Heinrich II of Hesse and Elisabeth von Leuchtenberg , the widow of Prince Count Johann I von Henneberg-Schleusingen, signed a mutual inheritance contract over the rule of Schmalkalden in 1360, after they both shared the territory of Burgrave Albrecht of Nuremberg, the husband of Sophie von Henneberg , had acquired. With the extinction of the Hennebergs, the dual rule ended and the Schmalkalden rule fell to the House of Hesse .

Georg Ernst Prince of Henneberg, the last Henneberger († 1583)

Going out

Despite these territorial losses, the Hennebergers were temporarily the greatest secular power in the Franconian Empire . The county of Henneberg has always been in the area of ​​friction between central and southern German powers. This forced Wilhelm IV of Henneberg-Schleusingen to implement the Reformation in the 16th century. Lack of money led to a bond with the Wettin house, as no partner could be found in the neighboring Catholic parts of Franconia . On September 1, 1554, in the town hall of Kahla between the Ernestine dukes Johann Friedrich II. , Johann Wilhelm I and Johann Friedrich III. the younger one on the one hand and Prince Count Wilhelm, Georg Ernst and Poppo von Henneberg on the other, the Ernestine-Henneberg hereditary brotherhood decided. This so-called " Kahla contract " with the Wettins provided for the takeover of Henneberg by Saxony when the Henneberg line died. This case occurred in 1583 with the death of the last Prince Count Georg Ernst. The Ernestines (Weimar / Gotha) were entitled to seven, the Albertines (Dresden) to five-twelfth of the hereditary mass. The Wettin partitions soon led to a further fragmentation of the Henneberg heritage; It was not until 1660 that the lines of the Wettin house were able to agree on a division of the county of Henneberg.

Tribe list

Family table of those from Henneberg

From Poppo I to Heinrich I (11th century to 1262)

  1. Poppo I († 1078), Count of Henneberg
    1. Gotebold II. († 1144)
      1. Poppo IV. († 1156) ⚭ Irmgard from the house of the Udons
        1. Berthold I († 1159)
          1. Poppo VI. († 1190), ⚭ 1136 Countess Palatine Bertha of Saxony, ⚭ Sophie of Istria
            1. Berthold II. († 1212)
              1. Berthold III. († around 1218)
            2. Poppo VII von Henneberg- Strauf († 1245) ⚭ 1206 Elisabeth von Wildberg , 1223 ⚭ Jutta von Thuringia
              1. Hermann I von Henneberg-Coburg (1224–1290) ⚭ Margarete von Holland , sister of Wilhelm von Holland
                1. Poppo d. J. von Henneberg-Coburg († 1291), 1290–1291 Count von Henneberg-Coburg
                2. Jutta von Henneberg-Coburg, ⚭ Otto von Brandenburg
              2. Heinrich I von Henneberg-Schleusingen († 1262) (see below)
              3. Berthold I von Henneberg , bishop of Würzburg 1267–1274, auxiliary bishop in Mainz 1307–1312
              4. Margarete von Henneberg, ⚭ Konrad von Wildberg († 1305)
              5. Bertha von Henneberg, ⚭ (before April 10, 1250) Friedrich I. zu Castell
            3. Otto I. von Botenlauben (1177–1245), minstrel , crusader and monastery founder ⚭ Beatrix von Courtenay
              1. Otto II von Botenlauben, provisional agent of the Cistercian convent Frauenroth
                1. Albert von Botenlauben
              2. Heinrich von Botenlauben
          2. Irmingard von Henneberg († 1197), ⚭ with the first Count Palatine at Rhein Konrad the Staufer
      2. Gebhard von Henneberg († March 17, 1159), 1150–1159 Bishop of Würzburg
      3. Günther von Henneberg († August 16, 1161), 1146–1161 Bishop of Speyer
      4. Otto von Henneberg († March 3, 1200), 1190–1200 Bishop of Speyer
      5. Hildegard von Henneberg, heiress of Zwingenberg and Auerbach ⚭ around 1134 Heinrich II. Count von Katzenelnbogen († around 1160), thereby establishing the Upper County of Katzenelnbogen
  2. Gotebold I († 1091)
    1. Poppo II. († 1118) → Branch line of the Lords and Counts of Frankenstein, resident at Frankenstein Castle (Bad Salzungen) until around 1354

From Heinrich I on (1262 to 1583)

  1. Heinrich I von Henneberg-Schleusingen († 1262), married to Sophia, a daughter of his stepmother Jutta von Thuringia
    1. Heinrich II. Von Henneberg-Hartenberg († 1317), 1262–1317 Count von Henneberg-Hartenberg, sold his third of Würzburg
      1. Poppo X. von Henneberg-Hartenberg († 1348), 1317–1348 Count of Henneberg-Hartenberg
        1. Berthold († 1378), 1348–1378 Count of Henneberg-Hartenberg, sold Hartenberg in 1371 to Hermann III. from Henneberg-Aschach
    2. Hermann II of Henneberg-Aschach († 1292), Count of Henneberg-Aschach 1262–1292 ⚭ Adelheid von Trimberg
      1. Hermann von Henneberg-Aschach, Count 1292–1306 with his brother Heinrich
      2. Henry III. von Henneberg-Aschach, († around 1355), Count of Henneberg-Aschach 1292–1352
        1. Hermann III. († 1403), Count von Henneberg-Aschach 1352–1403, sold Aschach 1390, bought Hartenberg 1371
          1. Friedrich I († 1422), Count of Henneberg-Aschach 1403–1422
            1. Georg († 1465), Count of Henneberg-Aschach 1422–1465
              1. Friedrich II. († 1488), Count of Henneberg-Aschach 1465–1488
                1. Hermann IV. († 1535), Count of Henneberg-Aschach 1488–1535
                  1. Berthold († 1549), sold Römhild to Mansfeld in 1548, and to Saxony in 1555
                  2. Albrecht († 1549), ⚭ Katharina Countess von Stolberg, she inherits Schwarza, which then falls to Stolberg by will
              2. Otto († 1502)
              3. Philipp von Henneberg-Aschach , Bishop of Bamberg 1475–1487
              4. Berthold von Henneberg-Aschach , Archbishop of Mainz 1484–1504
    3. Berthold III. of Henneberg-Schleusingen († 1284)
      1. Berthold IV./VII. (* 1272; † 1340), raised to the rank of prince in 1310
        1. Heinrich IV./VIII. († 1347) ⚭ Jutta von Brandenburg, granddaughter of Jutta von Henneberg-Coburg
          1. Elisabeth von Henneberg-Schleusingen , heiress of Irmelshausen ⚭ Count Eberhard von Württemberg
          2. Katharina von Henneberg , heiress of Coburg ⚭ Friedrich der Strenge von Meißen
          3. Sophie von Henneberg , heiress of Hildburghausen and Schmalkalden († 1372) ⚭ Albrecht the Beautiful (* 1319; † 1361), Burgrave of Nuremberg
          4. Anna von Henneberg († around 1363), abbess in the Sonnefeld monastery
        2. Johann I (* around 1289, † 1359) ⚭ Elisabeth von Leuchtenberg
          1. Heinrich V († 1405)
            1. Wilhelm I († 1426)
              1. Wilhelm II (* 1415; † 1444)
                1. William III. (* 1434- † 1480)
                  1. Wilhelm IV. († 1559), ⚭ Anastasia von Brandenburg, daughter of Elector Albrecht Achilles
                    1. Johann III. von Henneberg-Schleusingen (1503–1541), prince abbot of Fulda 1521 / 1529–1541
                    2. Wolfgang II. (1507–1537), ⚔ September 7, 1537 before Cherasco
                    3. Margarete (1508–1546), ⚭ 1534 Count Johann von Sayn-Wittgenstein-Vallendar († 1560)
                    4. Katharina (1509–1567), ⚭ 1524 Count Heinrich XXXII. to Blankenburg-Rudolstadt († 1538)
                    5. Christoph (1510–1548), Canon of Bamberg
                    6. Georg Ernst (1511–1583), last of his house, ⚭ I. 1543 Elisabeth von Braunschweig, ⚭ II. Elisabeth von Württemberg
                    7. Poppo XII. (1513–1574), ⚭ I. Elisabeth von Brandenburg (1510–1558), ⚭ II. Sophie von Braunschweig-Lüneburg (1541–1631)
                    8. Walpurgis (1516–1570), ⚭ I. 1537 Count Wolfgang von Hohenlohe-Weikersheim († 1545); ⚭ II. 1548 Count Karl II. Von Blankenhain-Gleichen († 1599)
                    9. Elisabeth (1517–1577), ⚭ Count Johann IX. zu Salm-Reifferscheidt († 1559)
                2. Johann II of Henneberg-Schleusingen , Prince Abbot of Fulda 1472–1507
              2. Henry XI.
        3. Elisabeth († 1377) ⚭ Johann II Burgrave of Nuremberg
        4. Berthold
        5. Ludwig, Canon in Magdeburg

Members of the Count's House

Apollonia von Henneberg († 1548)
Count Wilhelm IV of Henneberg-Schleusingen († 1559)
Grave slab of Count Hermann VIII von Henneberg-Aschach (1470–1535) and his wife Elisabeth von Brandenburg (by Peter Vischer ) in the collegiate church of Römhild

Henneberg – Schleusingen line

Line Henneberg – Aschach – Römhild

Noble von Henneberg

Since 1738 there has been a noble family from Henneberg, who received the hereditary-Austrian nobility with "Edler von Henneberg"

See also


Web links

Commons : Henneberg  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Signed the formula of concord from 1577 and the book of concord from 1580; see. BSLK , p. 16 and p. 764.
  2. The date of the day of death differs slightly in the various sources and is given between January 7th and 9th
  3. ^ Johann August Friedrich Schmidt: Historical-topographical description of the mountain town of Ilmenau and its surroundings. Ilmenau 1839, p. 15.
  4. ^ Johann August Friedrich Schmidt: Historical-topographical description of the mountain town of Ilmenau and its surroundings. Ilmenau 1839, p. 15.
  5. see Adelslexikon Vol. 5/1984